FEMA Mitigation Best Practices: Defensible Space Saves Home from Wildfire   [open pdf - 25KB]

Alternate Title: Defensible Space Saves Home Wildfire Mitigation Success

"The FEMA Best Practices Portfolio consists of mitigation stories submitted by individuals and communities that describe measures they have taken to reduce the loss of life and property from disasters. These Best Practices are meant to provide ideas and concepts about reducing losses and to encourage others to evaluate their own risk and consider mitigation as a long-term solution to reducing that risk." From the document: "The home of Mrs. Lois Trimble, which she and her husband have owned since 1969, is located in the Pinedale area, Navajo, County, Arizona, just 10 miles NW of Show Low. They built their house over the years and it became their primary residence in 1981. The entire area around this home was burned by the Rodeo-Chediski Fire that swept through the community late June of 2002. Mrs. Trimble tells the following story, 'The fire started on Monday. On Tuesday we were told that the fire was out. Wednesday morning, ash was raining down all around us. My son called and told us that the fire had exploded, we looked and saw it coming over the ridge. We were told to evacuate; we had one hour. Because we had experienced this before, five years ago, we knew exactly what to grab; important papers, some food, clothes and photo albums. My husband is an invalid so my daughter and I had to do it all.' They were evacuated to the town of Eager and sheltered there until it was safe to return. The only building which survived the fire was their home." This and other individual FEMA Best Practices documents are also combined in "Mitigation Best Practices: Public and Private Sector Best Practice Stories for All Activity/Project Types in All States and Territories Relating to All Hazards [August 10, 2011]," which can be accessed at the following link: [https://www.hsdl.org/?abstract&did=683132]

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Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA): http://www.fema.gov/
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